creatio ex nihilo

Lewis Reich LBR at
Fri Feb 2 22:55:53 EST 2001

On 2 Feb 01, at 20:46, Jonathan D. Safren wrote:

> Creatio ex nihilo also appears in Jewish tradition. "creation by word"
> (beri'ah be-ma'amar) is one way of putting it; "Hanging the world on
> nothing "(toleh erets al belimah) is another.

I've never happened to look at the commentaries on that phrase, but I've 
somehow always assumed that "hanging the world on nothing" meant that 
the world was neither hung from nor supported by any other material object 
(e.g. neither Atlas nor a turtle undernearth, no string suspending it from 
something above).  How is the phrase interpreted to support ex nihilo?

Lewis Reich

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